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Our DAILY GOSPEL DEVOTIONAL is the story of Jesus from Incarnation to Ascension. This is a chronology and harmony of the gospel accounts in which the ongoing narrative and doctrinal context are carefully considered. In one year we reflect on every passage of every gospel.
May God bless you as we follow the disciples on the journey through the earthly life of Jesus Christ.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Bigger than Big

Whither can I go from you presence?
(Psalm 139:7)

Have you ever pondered the immensity of God? Consider that everywhere He is He is there in His fullness. He can give you His undivided attention while still giving it to someone and everyone else at the exact same time. He has billions upon billions of events all going on at the same time, yet He has everything under control, and is using everything to orchestrate every facet of His holy will (Ephesians 1:11). Nothing can take Him by surprise. We cannot understand it fully but that is what makes Him God.

Far from being an unknowable, utterly transcendent, hands-off God like imagined by the Deists, we see the Lord involved in creation at the beginning (Genesis 1) and also management of His creation with the presence of the Spirit beyond the original six days. Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth (Psalm 104:30). The Spirit of God makes the person of Jesus Christ immanent to our lives today, but there is an important distinction to be made, as we see in Psalm 139:7 which highlights God’s immanence in relation to the creation.

The Holy Spirit, being God, has the same incommunicable attributes as the Father. Here we see the omnipresence of God. However, there is the danger that if we start imagining God as being immanent only, rather than transcendent and apart from His creation, we may fall prey to what is known as panentheism. An important point to made is this: God is not “distributed” throughout the universe He is separate from it. There is a critical difference between omnipresence (everything is in the presence of God and He exerts controlling force upon it), and God being present in everything (panentheism, which is akin to the Hindu and New Age religions). This is a crucial distinction. God is close enough to enter into your little world, but He can also handle any problem; He is still bigger than big.

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7 Comments:

At 12:03 AM, Blogger donsands said...

"Nothing can take Him by surprise."

Amen brother! Encouraging.

Does this take away free will? Some would say it does.

 
At 9:22 AM, Anonymous Chris said...

Waaaaay big! :)

 
At 11:30 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

It all depends on what you mean by free will, of course...

 
At 12:01 PM, Blogger donsands said...

I've heard it argued that if God knows all things that we will do, then we are basically not free to chose, but have already been locked-in to doing what we will do, and so it's not our free will, but a determined destiny without choice.
I think that's how the arguement goes.
I read about it in Bruce Ware's book, "God's Lesser Glory".

I was just wondering if you had a short and sweet thought on this controversial issue.

 
At 12:18 PM, Blogger Even So... said...

Just because God is sovereign doesn't mean we are static...

We are elected to action not apathy...

Understanding God as both Creator and Sustainer, we realize that there must not be a single radical molecule in the universe...

The Puritan saying applies: What God has decreed in eternity, Man will freely choose in time...

It is a matter of understanding primary and secondary causes...you could probably search over at Triablogue and find a wealth of info on that subject...

 
At 1:23 PM, Blogger donsands said...

Thanks JD. You da man.

 
At 7:56 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

Growing in the knowledge of His character allows us to see Hm as bigger in our lives...

 

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